MAKING A CROSS COUNTRY road trip isn’t easy. It’s especially grueling when you’re under a schedule with minimal time to stop except for gas, bathroom breaks, and to eat, sleep and pay tolls.
Despite the challenges, there’s a certain sense of adventure and accomplishment in completing a long-distance journey. It’s a great way to see the country. My husband and I traveled 3,029 miles on a late May road trip from Minnesota to Massachusetts and back. I’ve already taken you to our destinations of Somerville and Medford.
Now it’s time to take you other places.
But before I do that, here’s a summary of trip highs and lows:
- Seeing our son for the first time since Christmas and watching him graduate from Tufts University.
- People-watching in greater Boston.
- Discovering beautiful Baldwinsville, New York.
- Staying at an historic state park lodge in Indiana.
- Sitting around a campfire and talking with an inspiring young couple at the state park.
- The friendly people we met everywhere.
- Especially welcoming and helpful hotel staff.
- Lodging for $60.
- Seeing the diversity of the U.S. landscape.
- Discovering charming Princeton, Illinois.
- The pie at Myrtle’s Cafe and Pie in Princeton.
- A Grant Wood themed rest stop in Iowa.
- Finally finding our way out of Buffalo, New York.
- Seeing Lake Erie.
- Road construction.
- Toll booths.
- Too many dead deer along the Interstates, especially in Pennsylvania with New York coming in second.
- Hotels that allow smoking.
- A less than welcoming Illinois hotel clerk who refused to give us an AARP discount because the hotel “had met its quota for the night.” I’ve never heard of this before. We didn’t believe him and left. He had a bad overall attitude.
- Cleaning an apartment kitchen used by college students.
- Getting lost in a really bad part of Buffalo, New York, for 1 ½ hours.
- Crazy and dangerous drivers in Buffalo.
- Failing to see Niagra Falls once we reached the general falls area only to encounter road construction and no directions how to get to the American side of the falls.
- Morning rush hour in Hartford, Connecticut, on a rainy Monday.
- Nearly being hit head-on when a vehicle crossed the center line on a state highway in Iowa.
- Too many miles (600 driven one day) and not enough sleep.
FYI: Check back next week as I showcase specific places from our trip.
© Copyright 2016 Audrey Kletscher Helbling